By Cat, beginning Feb 2018
These notes are from various health documentary videos and websites, as noted for each item. Topics are in alphabetical order. The article was getting too long, so I’ve separated it into four articles.
March 2020 update: H-P article was getting too long, so I separated it into two articles for a total of 5 articles.
Allergies and Food Sensitivities
I see an NAET (Nambudripad’s Allergy Elimination Treatment) practitioner for treatment of my allergies and food sensitivities (I have many of the latter). The method uses muscle testing to determine cause of allergies, and foods that cause sensitivities, then a special rubbing of the spine followed by acupuncture to resolve the problem. I find this very effective, although one of my food sensitivities is proving difficult to resolve (foods/supplements containing sulfur, such as garlic and alpha lipoic acid). See also my article: Dealing with Food Sensitivities.
Ever since I was a child I’ve had a mild allergic reaction (mostly runny nose and occasional cough) during the winter. And I’ve also had an allergy to the sun (actually to something the sun activates in my skin), which results in a rash and abdominal pain.
Snow Mold Allergy
I’ve recently connected my winter allergy (that I’ve had since childhood) to snow mold (see Wikipedia for more about this type of mold).
The symptoms associated with snow mold allergy include (from tandurust.com/allergies/symptoms-snow-mold-allergy.html),
- Allergic Rhinitis: This is characterized by sneezing, burning and itching eyes, coughing with blocked nose and post nasal drip. The condition is often associated with itching in the nose and running nose
- Itching in the throat with hoarsens in observed in most of the cases
- Dark circles under the eyes with constant watering of the eyes. Red rimmed eyes with swelling around the eyes is a common feature
- General symptoms including low grade fever, loss of appetite and constipation may also be observed, depending upon the intensity of the allergic reaction.
List of home remedies (from moldblogger.com/mold-allergies-at-home-remedies:
- Ginger, for instance, is an anti-inflammatory that causes glands and passages to reduce swelling. This helps both with breathing, achy bodies, and swollen sinuses.
- Wild oregano, olive leaf extract, and garlic are all anti-fungal, killing off mold in the body, thereby cutting straight to the source, rather than dealing solely with symptoms.”
- Echinacea boosts the immune system, aiding the body’s ability to fight off mold.
- Yogurt containing live cultures fights off yeast in the body, which the mold feeds on.
- Oranges and tomatoes, as well as other foods containing large quantities of vitamin C, also help the body to fight off mold, as well as limit the symptoms.
- Eating less sugar and wheat, which mold interacts with, creates a less appealing environment for mold, therefore stopping mold from completely overtaking the body.”
- Vaporizers, vapor-rubs, saline solution, and other decongestants clear out sinuses, lungs, throat, and breathing passages.
- Boiling water and allowing the steam to envelop the face has much the same effect, especially if eucalyptus is added to the water.
- Ice packs can be held to inflamed areas,” especially “when alternated with heat and steam against the same area.”
- Pau d’arco, … generally taken as a concentration or an infusion, rather than [as] a supplemental capsule.”
- [Cat’s note: I would only use a painkiller as a last-ditch option, as it only makes you blind to the problem, rather than helping to heal from the problem.]
Treatment and prevention of mold allergies with homeopathic and other natural remedies (from webdicine.com/10-easy-to-do-homeopathic-methods-of-natural-mold-allergy-treatment-and-prevention.html)
- Allum cepa is a natural mold allergy homeopathic remedy; take it once everyday to help you get rid of your mold allergy.
- Butterbur is just one of many herbs used in homeopathy for treatment of mold allergy
- Buminne is a Chinese herbal formula that consists of 11 different herbal ingredients, that together lessen the symptoms (but does not “cure” the allergy)
- The article lists other herbal and supplement treatments
Essential Oils (from iythealth.com/essential-oils-mold-allergies/)
- Oregano oil
- Basil oil
- Eucalyptus oil
- Lemon oil
- Tea tree oil
From Green Med Info: What 15 Almonds a Day Can Do for You: greenmedinfo.health/blog/what-15-almonds-day-can-do-you, by Jane Goldberg, PhD.; see her article for her references which I put in square brackets.
First, they are rich on good fats, both mono- and poly-unsaturated fats; studies show eating 15 almonds (about 10g) a day can have significant positive impact on lipid (fat) blood tests, for patients with pre-existing coronary artery disease [Jamshed]:
- Raise HDL (so-called “good” cholesterol);
- Lower triglycerides (storage fats);
- Lower total cholesterol including LDL cholesterol and VLDL (so-called “bad” cholesterol); and
- Lower atherogenic index, which is strongly correlated with chronic inflammation and the development of vascular diseases
Second, people with insulin resistance or type-2 diabetes also show positive results from eating almonds [Sing-Chung]: “Consuming just 60g (about 2 ounces) of almonds daily for four-weeks showed reductions in insulin resistance, fasting insulin and glucose.”
Third, they help keep our eyes; for example: “Rich in vitamin E, almonds can help prevent abnormal changes to the lens, which can accelerate the development of cataracts.” [Rouhiainen]
The author reminds us that it’s best to soak or sprout almonds before eating them, and to avoid almonds grown in the US because they are pasteurized; better to seek out “imported Italian or Spanish almonds.”
Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
Aging; Anti-Aging Foods, Supplements
- Notes on Aging;
- Anti-Aging Foods, Supplements (below)
- Brain and Nerve Health, below
- Notes on: Dementia; Depression & Anxiety
Anti-Aging Foods, Supplements
Fermented Anti-Aging Foods, Top-5 list
From Green Med Info:
“Want a simple way to boost your brain power, heart health, digestion, disease resistance and energy level? If that all sounds too good to be true, it’s time you got acquainted with the top five traditional, fermented anti-aging foods.”
The scientifically backed health benefits of eating probiotic-rich fermented foods include [see Green Med Info article for references in Roman numerals]:
… Fermentation produces “good” bacteria called probiotics,* which confer a wealth of benefits to intestinal flora when consumed, enhancing the health of your gut microbiome and boosting your immune system.”
‘*Probiotics link to GMI’s article: greenmedinfo.com/substance/probiotics
The food list is as follows:
- Yogurt [preferably unsweetened and homemade; sweetened with honey is an occasional option. see also my article on homemade yogurt];
- Fermented vegetables, such as kimchi or fermented beets
- Kombucha [see also my article: Old Fashioned Sodas (Lacto-Fermented)];
- Apple Cider Vinegar [especially ACV with the Mother. See also my articles: Apple Cider Vinegar’s Many Health Benefits (About), and ACV Tonic: with Lemon Water]
- Miso (fermented soy bean paste)
See also my menu for more: List of Culturing, Curing, Fermentation, & Tonic Articles, Recipes
Antibiotics and probiotics:
Mercola article shares information from recent studies about what probiotics are best to take when you have to take antibiotics. Antibiotics are non-discriminatory and kill not only the bad but also the good bugs in our gut.
Taking regular probiotics used to be recommended to help restore the gut microbiome after taking antibiotics, but “recent research casts doubt on the standard recommendation to reseed your gut with probiotics after taking a course of antibiotics, finding Lactobacillus bacteria actually inhibits the recovery of your gut microbiome.”
Instead, spore-based probiotics are recommended because they “do not contain any live Bacillus strains, only its spores, which means antibiotics cannot kill them. Sporebiotics may therefore be able to reestablish your gut microbiome more effectively than regular probiotics when taken in conjunction with antibiotics.”
Also, glyphosate (in RoundUp) is a patented antibiotic, so if you eat foods that have been sprayed with glyphosate – the most common foods are GMO soy, corn and canola, and also non-Organic grains which are sprayed with glyphosate to hasten drying of the grains before harvest. So if you eat foods sprayed with glyphosate, you should change to sporebiotics. See also Cat’s article: Detox Glyphosate (Roundup) from your Body.
From Green Med Info (GMI) article:
The flavonoid, quercetin is a “very important antioxidant that protects cells from free-radical damage. … A potent antioxidant, quercetin boasts of anti-inflammatory, anti-hypertensive, antiobesity and anti-atherosclerotic actions. Since free radicals figure into the development of diseases, quercetin holds promise for benefitting conditions such as high blood pressure, vascular disorders and metabolic syndrome.”
The article discusses 4 reasons why you need quercetin, including references to scientific studies. Those 4 reasons are (see article for more detail):
- Potential anti-diabetes (Type 2) aid;
- Protection from DNA damage;
- Chemopreventive properties (for fighting cancer;
- Prevention and treatment of various infections.
See also lists of other GMI articles on quercetin.
CoQ10: Ubiquinol and Ubiquinone
I take the Ubiquinol form (iHerb LEX-14266)
Anxiety & Depression
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
Top 5 Uses for ACV
from Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/five-top-uses-apple-cider-vinegar; see article for more detail. [Cat’s note: the best kind of ACV for health benefits is raw ACV, with the “mother,” such as Bragg’s brand, as it contains the good bacteria that forms ACV from the juices of the apple.]
- Aids in weight loss and maintenance;
- Fights harmful bacteria;
- Assists in managing Type-2 diabetes and blood sugar levels;
- Helps control candida overgrowth infection;
- Helps improve heart health.
Arthritis (both OA and RA):
See also Joints on Notes: H – P
Three-Spice Combo Improves Chronic Knee Osteoarthritis
From Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/three-spice-combo-improves-chronic-knee-osteoarthritis (color in text is my addition)
“Turmeric extract, when combined with gingerols in ginger and piperine in black pepper, shows promise for addressing osteoarthritis, with results similar to those achieved by a common anti-inflammatory medication [Naproxen].” (Per a 2020 study; see GMI article reference iii for link to study by Heidari-Beni M et al, published in Phytother Res. 2020 Aug ;34(8):2067-2073. Epub 2020 Mar 16).
Cat’s note: I’ve started taking liquid “liposomal turmeric,” which is a mix of turmeric, coconut oil and black pepper for my knee pain, and it is helping significantly – my knees no longer hurt when walking up/down stairs, and they don’t hurt as much when I have to get down to the floor on my knees. This combo makes turmeric more absorbable, and more effective. I might start adding ginger to the mix.
Another great way to improve the absorbability and health benefits of turmeric is to drink Golden Milk (aka Golden Tea), which is a combo of diary milk or coconut milk and turmeric. Add a bit of honey and few shakes of ground black pepper and voila! It’s delicious.
The article also lists “four clinically validated, natural alternatives that are worth considering for osteoarthritis and other sources of chronic pain,” and provides links to the pertinent studies. Only 1 of the 4 listed help with osteoarthritis:
“Arnica — In a 2007 study, topically applied arnica was found to be as effective as ibuprofen for relieving symptoms due to osteoarthritis of the wrist.[vi] It also led to fewer side effects.” See GMI article greenmedinfo.com/substance/arnica for more about arnica.
9 Herbs to Fight Arthritis Pain
from Healthline: healthline.com/health/osteoarthritis/herbs-arthritis-pain. See that article for more detail. I will work on making a pdf version that actually is readable
These herbs “may have anti-inflammatory properties that can help with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or osteoarthritis (OA).”
- Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory properties, and doesn’t have the negative gastrointestinal effects of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), commonly used for arthritis pain. CAUTION: for some people, taking it orally may cause certain side effects. Also, “it may lower glucose levels and interact with some diabetes medications.”
- Boswellia (aka frankincense) also has anti-inflammatory properties to help people with “help people with RA, OA, and gout.” CAUTION: “Doses of up to 1 gram a day of boswellia appear to be safe, but high doses can affect the liver.” I take this for OA in my knees.
- Cat’s Claw has anti-inflammatory properties that “may reduce swelling in arthritis.” It “can also boost the immune system.” CAUTION: See the healthline article for possible side-effects, and for specific conditions that indicate should not use this herb.
- Eucalyptus “may help reduce swelling and pain related to arthritis;… eucalyptus aromatherapy [using essential oils] may help ease the symptoms of RA.” CAUTION: See the healthline article for how to take this oil (i.e., dilution instructions).
- Ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties; “use it for rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and pain in the joints and muscles.” See also “Arthritis” section, above for improved benefits of liposomal ginger and turmeric. CAUTION: “It can interfere with some medications, such as warfarin (Coumadin), a blood thinner.”
- Green Tea also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help with RA and OA. It is known to be safe for most people.
- Thunder god vine (Tripterygium wilfordii) has long been used in Oriental medicine to manage inflammation and excessive immune activity. It may help with RA and other auto-immune diseases. CAUTION: It can have “very serious negative effects,” and may also “interact negatively with certain prescription medicines.” See the healthline article for more detail.
- Turmeric has amazing anti-inflammatory properties from its main ingredient, curcumin. It has a long use history in Oriental medicine, especially “traditional Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. It may help with OA, RA, and other arthritic conditions,” but its health benefits do not stop there. Check it out on Green Med Info. See also “Arthritis” section, above for improved benefits of liposomal ginger and turmeric.
- Willow bark is an ancient treatment for pain and inflammation. It is the original “aspirin,” because it contains the renowned natural pain reliever, salicylic acid. Aspirin is a synthetic form so it could be patented (acetyl-salicylic acid). I find that willow bark tincture works much better and faster than aspirin for nerve pain such as headaches; it can also be taken as a tea or in tablet form. CAUTION: “Ask your doctor before using willow bark, especially if you’re using blood thinners or have a stomach ulcer. Do not take it if you’re allergic to aspirin.”
Bad foods for Arthritis
From https://securessl.losethebackpain.com/products/135/sp-5-worst-foods-full, a video. In reverse order: (my notes not yet complete)
#5: Grains (especially gluten grains) and refined carbs that provide sugar. Fibrin is the key – it is protective of injuries, but if it builds up, it causes inflammation and pain
References (for bad foods for arthritis list):
- Adler A, Holub B. Effect of garlic and fish-oil supplementation on serum lipid and lipoprotein concentrations in hypercholesterolemic men. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 1997 Feb;65(2):445-50.
- NIAMS, NIH, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA. Arthritis & Rheumatology (Impact Factor: 7.87).06/1998; 41(5):778-99. DOI: 10.1002/1529-0131(199805)41:5<778::AID-ART4>3.0.CO;2-V Source: PubMed
- Hürlimann, David, Frank Enseleit, and Priv-Doz Dr Frank Ruschitzka. “Rheumatoide arthritis, inflammation und atherosklerose.” Herz 29.8 (2004): 760-768.
- Schett, Georg. “Rheumatoid arthritis: inflammation and bone loss.” Wiener Medizinische Wochenschrift 156.1-2 (2006): 34-41.
Black Seed Oil (Black cumin) for Arthritis:
From Sayer Ji (GreenMed Info) Use topically for osteoarthritis, 1 ml, 3x/day. Can also take orally for this and other issues. 8/27/18: will order to give it a try. See my article on Arthritis for my experience.
See also “Black Seed Oil (Black cumin)” section, below for more and for other uses.
Asafoetida (Hing) – India spice – has many health benefits
This spice has a very strong aroma of garlic/onion, and can be used as a substitute for them. Use only a pinch. [I may try “Best Hing Ever” (iHerb PIF-50744) and use a tiny pinch in my smoothie.]
- Asafoetida has antibacterial, antiparasitic and antiviral properties. In 2009, researchers discovered certain compounds in the herb were more effective at killing the H1N1 influenza virus than the commercial antiviral drug amantadine
- Asafoetida also has antispasmodic, carminative, expectorant, laxative and sedative properties, just to name a few. Historical uses include the treatment of nervous conditions, bronchitis, asthma, whooping cough and more
- Can also use it in bean-based dishes, to helps prevent gassiness
- Eating it raw can cause severe diarrhea and/or vomiting
- Best to close container as soon as possible. Then, keep it hermetically sealed in an airtight plastic container.
Atherosclerosis (clogged arteries)
7 ways to prevent/reverse atherosclerosis
(from Green Med Info; see the article for its references)
- B Vitamins complex, especially 2.5 mg folate, 25 mg Vitamin B6, and 0.5mg Vitamin B12 for 1 year, resulted in significant reductions in arterial thickness.
- Garlic is known to regress plaque buildup in the arteries.
- Pomegranate also known to regress plaque buildup in the arteries.
- Fermented cabbage (kimchi), which includes fermented cabbage, hot pepper, and various other ingredients, including fermented fish, appears to stall the atherosclerotic process in the animal model. Also bacteria from fermentation are capable of degrading toxic chemicals that can additional bodily harm.
- L-arginine (amino acid) reduces thickening of arteries. addressing the underlying dysfunction associated with cardiovascular disease: endothelial dysfunction. It is capable of addressing the underlying dysfunction associated with cardiovascular disease: endothelial dysfunction.
- Turmeric prevents damage to the arteries associated with blockage (neointima formation).
- Sesame seed is an excellent cardio-protective substance, ideally suited for preventing the progression of atherosclerosis. One animal study found it was capable of preventing atherosclerosis lesion formation.
Top 5 Nutrients to Support Autoimmune Conditions
From Dr. Jockers (drjockers.com/autoimmune-disease/); check out the article for more detail.
The top 5 nutrients are, with Cat’s notes in square brackets [_]:
- Vitamin D [The best source of this vitamin is from sunshine; however, not everywhere gets enough sunshine, so a supplement is another option. It is best to get vitamin D in proper balance with Vitamin A (tho not every expert agrees on what that balance should be. See FatSoluble Vitamin A in the Vitamin A:D ratio section). One such supplemental source is Green Pasture’s Fermented Cod Liver Oil (formerly Blue Ice Fermented Cod Liver Oil), which has an A:D ratio of 10:1.]
- Zinc [Best supplemental form is a chelated form, such as zinc picolinate or zinc bisglycinate, as the chelation makes the zinc more absorbable.]
- Glutathione [The supplement I take is Brocco-Glutathione; see iherb code NTA-16030 for more info. It contains L-glutathione and broccoli sprouts, which are a natural glutathione booster; see the iherb page for more info.]
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids [One great source is Green Pasture’s Fermented Cod Liver Oil (see Vitamin D, above); also wild caught salmon (NOT farmed salmon).]
- Probiotics [Best form is spore-based, as this gets through the acidic stomach, protected by the spore. However, I recently learned (11/18/21) that for most people, probiotic supplements do not remain in the body but rather pass through the gut and out with your stool, tho I don’t know if this applies to spore-form.]
How to Prevent and Reverse Autoimmune Disease:
See AutoimmuneHowToGuide_v3 (pdf) by Jonathan Otto. File saved in CATSFORK > PDF Files / AutoimmuneHowToGuide_v3.pdf.
See also ebooks from Jonathan Otto (part of his online document-series: Autoimmune Answers). They are too large to include here, so here’s pdf of just the lists (no details): AutoImmune-List_FoodsRemedies-to-PreventHeal.pdf. I have saved the original ebooks on my laptop: HEALTH-NUTRITION > 2 PODCASTS-ARTICLES > eBOOKS > AUTO-IMMUNE:
See Autoimmune Diet: Top 12 Foods to Reduce Inflammation. See Cat’s Kitchen: Notes on Natural Health and Healing Topics: H – P and scroll down to “Inflammation Diet” for my notes, originally from Dr. Jocker’s article on the Autoimmune Diet.
See Dr. Jockers’ article Autophagy: What is It and 8 Ways to Enhance It, for more detail. “… autophagy — your body’s natural method of detoxification. … Autophagy happens when your body recycles and gets rid of old or excess cells (like fat) that don’t serve a purpose or benefit your health.“
From his article: Top 5 Benefits of Autophagy:
- “Getting rid of senescent cells … older cells that are not functioning at a high level;
- Improving mitochondrial health;
- Eliminating viral infected cells;
- Reduces cellular apoptosis;
- Creates a stronger and more stress-Resilient body and mind.”
He also lists 8 ways to optimize autophagy, but I have not copied them here; you can read his article, instead.
See also my post: Nutrition: Foods & Supplements, under “Avocados” regarding how avocados can help with dementia and other brain disorders. See also Green Med Info articles: greenmedinfo.health/blog/avocado-day-boosts-your-brain, greenmedinfo.health/substance/lutein and greenmedinfo.health/substance/carotenoids.
Baking Soda for health and anti-cancer
From Lee Euler article in CancerDefeated.com. Start with 1 tsp in glass of water 1 – 2 times a day for a week on empty stomach (well after a meal), then reduce dosage. You can do home test with pH strips to see how you are doing and adjust dose accordingly (article doesn’t give best pH). I wonder if taking bitters and soda helps.. See also: “Baking soda might stave off inflammation caused by autoimmune diseases, research finds.” By Tamim Alnuweiri, 30 April 2018.
Related articles on soda waters:
- Benefits of soda-water on health (lists several conditions)
- Difference Between Seltzer and Club Soda
- Difference between Sparkling water and Soda water
- Difference Between Water and Mineral water
- Difference Between Club Soda And Tonic Water
- Difference Between Bicarbonate and Baking Soda
Benefits of Beets:
Beets are good for lungs!
I have always loved beets; I add fermented beets to my daily smoothie and have a bit of beet with most dinners. That could explain why I’m not having trouble with my lungs from the combination of COVID-19 exposure and smoke from western forest fires this year.
Summary notes from Mercola’s article (see link above):
- As you age, respiratory muscle function — specifically that of the diaphragm — declines
- This can lead to breathing troubles, impaired airway clearance and a decreased quality of life in older adults
- Nitrates, which are found in beets, have been shown to improve muscle contractions in the diaphragm, helping to improve breathing as a byproduct
Cat’s note: Nitrates and nitrites are NOT the same; they are related, but not the same.
Additional Benefits of Beets:
- from Mercola article (link above)
- Lower your blood pressure
- Boost your stamina
- Fight inflammation
- Stave off cancer
- Provide valuable nutrients (vitamins C and Folate, manganese mineral, and fiber
- Support detoxification
- from Green Med Info (link above)
- Enhance efficiency of mitochondria — Benefits for athletic performance, stamina and energy;
- Cardiovascular health benefits
Benefits of betalains in beets: (from Green Med Info, link above)
- Antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and anti-protozoal activity.
- Anticancer properties.
- Improves ratio of HDL cholesterol to LDL cholesterol and lowers the level of oxidized LDL.
- Lowers blood glucose and body weight.
- Liver protective. Induces detoxification phase II enzyme.
- Improves mitochondrial function.
- Lowers blood pressure.
- Fights inflammation.
How to consume beets for maximum benefits: (from Green Med Info, link above)
- Choose Organic beets.
- Do not overcook them (overcooking damages the betalains in beets – see above); best way is to stem them, un-peeled, for 15 minutes.
- Beet powder added to smoothies, etc., is a great option. especially if you are on a ketogenic eating plan. Just be sure to use a high quality beet powder prepared from organic beets. I use Mercola’s Fermented Beet Powder.
A natural antibiotic, and more!
From Dr Mark Hyman email (saved as Berberine n Microbiome_DrMMurray (pdf))
Berberine is a healing constituent of the roots of goldenseal, barberry, Oregon grape, and golden thread. It shows great promise for treating many health issues including insulin resistance/Type-2 diabetes, neuro-degenerative diseases, and supporting a healthy gut, among many of its actions.
Regarding the gut microbiome: it promotes the growth of Akkermansia muciniphila leading to an improved intestinal barrier, reduced circulating levels of gut-derived toxins, and a significant reduction in inflammation. It also increases the levels of Bifidobacterium, which also promotes intestinal health, reduces absorption of gut-derived toxins, and reduces gut and systemic inflammation.
Berries: Their Amazing Benefits
From Green Med Info and Mercola:
Berries are not only anti-diabetic, but also have many other benefits, per the article. It also asserts, “each type of berry has its specific ‘superpower’.” The article provides references to studies that support these benefits.
- As an anti-diabetic, berries can prevent the disease and its complications. The following berries are the most effective for this: “blueberries, bilberries, cranberries, raspberries, mulberries, lingonberries, blackberries, strawberries, goji berries, acai berries, chokeberries, black currants and maqui berries.” Also Indian gooseberry, crowberries and red sour berries.
- Hair loss: Indian gooseberry, bilberries, fresh black currants, blackberries, cranberries, crowberries, goji berries, strawberries and red sour berries.
- Anti-aging and improved brain health; the article discusses strawberries and blueberries.
- Cardiovascular wellness: the article cites a scientific article concerning blueberries.
- Oral cancer and colorectal cancer: the article discusses black raspberries.
- Breast cancer: all fruits (not just berries) lower the risk of breast cancer. Article also mentions the “chemopreventive potential of Goji berries in breast cancer treatment.”
Mercola offers a caution: “Because fruit contains fructose, it can increase your risk of insulin resistance if you eat large amounts; examples of lower fructose fruits that are beneficial for most people include avocados, berries, kiwi and citrus fruits.“
When I make my daily raw-milk and yogurt smoothie, I include several fruits: apple, banana, orange (including bitter peel), mango, and several types of berries (pomegranate, blueberries, raspberries and Marion blackberries). This is my main source of fruit each day, divided between breakfast and “dessert” after dinner.
Binder of toxins and heavy metals
(Jonathan Landsman) naturalhealth365store.com/Ultra-Binder-Universal-Toxin-Binder-120g_p_66.html
Such as Dr Sade’s Bitters (Wendy Myers) to stimulate liver bile and other key digestive elements.Formula #9 ingredients: Aerial parts (dandelion, milk thistle, Solidago virgaurea); roots (gentian, burdock), and essential oils (sweet orange, myrrh, juniper and clove) to spray into water. This is different from Angostura bitters and Swedish bitters. See also quicksilverscientific.com for more info. Interesting that it uses dandelion (aerial parts) rather than root, as the latter is also well known for liver/bile support.
Black Seed Oil (Black cumin)
Benefits of Black Seed Oil
- Arthritis section, above, for treating arthritis with black seed oil;
- Alzheimer’s, Dementia, and Other Neurodegenerative Diseases: Testing & Treatment;
- Web MD: webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-901/black-seed;
- Dr.Axe: draxe.com/nutrition/black-seed-oil-benefits/;
- Dr. Isabella Wentz: thyroidpharmacist.com/articles/black-seed-oil-and-hashimotos/;
- Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/black-seed-remedy-everything-death.
From Green Med Info email newsletter 5/10/20:
“Black Cumin Seed Oil (also often called Black Seed Oil) comes from the Nigella Sativa plant that is native to Asia. Studies have shown that [it] can be useful for:
- Asthma and Allergies
- Eczema and Psoriasis
- Heart Health
- Candida and Fungus
- Balance Blood Sugar
- Immune Health
- Skin and Hair”
From Healthline: Black Seed Oil is an ancient remedy from Asia and the Mid-East, that has been used in traditional medicine for over 2,000 years due to its many therapeutic benefits. It:
- Is high in antioxidants;
- May help in treating asthma;
- May aid weight loss efforts;
- May lower blood sugar levels;
- Reduce insulin resistance (from aboutblackseedoil.com/what-is-black-seed/): “2010 research study found that 2 grams of black seeds per day reduced fasting blood glucose readings by an average of 45 mg/dl after four weeks and 62 mg/dl at eight weeks. HbA1C readings were reduced by 1.5% after 12 weeks. Participants had decreased insulin resistance.” For more about the study, see: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21675032“
- May help lower cholesterol and blood pressure;
- May protect brain health and help slow progress of several forms of dementia (see my article: Notes on Alzheimer’s, dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases: Testing & Treatment);
- May protect against overgrowth of Candida albicans;
- May be good for skin and hair, have anticancer benefits, reduce RA symptoms, and help with male infertility.
Cautions about Black Seed Oil:
However, per a Mercola article (articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/11/12/black-seed-oil-covid.aspx), because like other seed oils, black seed oil is high in the Omega-6 fat: linoleic acid, it should not be taken every day. He writes:
“Linoleic acid (LA) is likely the leading contributing cause of virtually all chronic diseases we have encountered in the last century. When LA is consumed in excessive amounts, it acts as a metabolic poison.“
See Q (none) – Z (Zinc deficiency) for “UTI Infections.”
Bones & Bone Health
Vitamins & Minerals for Bone Health
From a Mercola Sales Pitch (products.mercolamarket.com/calcium-supplement/):
“Calcium with Vitamins D3 & K2 provides the perfect balance of bone health-supporting nutrients, including vitamin D3 as cholecalciferol to support the actions of calcium and vitamin K2 for maintaining strong bones and bone-density levels.”
Cat’s note: See also “Bone Density Scans…” below, for clarification on bone density.
I prefer to get all my vitamins and minerals from the quality food I eat; however, as I age (I’m now in my 70s), I have trouble absorbing all the vitamins and minerals I need, as evidenced from symptoms. So in addition to good quality food, I also take vitamin & mineral supplements. I get my:
- Calcium from raw local milk (pasteurization of milk binds the calcium so it is difficult to absorb), and my multi-vitamin/mineral supplement;
- Vitamin D3 from wild-caught salmon, cod and other fish. Also from fermented cod liver oil supplement, and a D3 supplement prescribed by my naturopathic doctor; and
- Vitamin K2 from brie and other cheeses, and from Thorne’s K2 supplement (iHerb code THR-00661).
Bone Density Scans, and Density vs Strength of Bone
See Green Med Info article by Sayer Ji on this topic (greenmedinfo.com/blog/osteoporosis-myth-dangers-high-bone-mineral-density).
His lead-in to the article:
The present-day definitions of Osteopenia and Osteoporosis were arbitrarily conceived by the World Health Organization (WHO) in the early 90’s and then projected upon millions of women’s bodies seemingly in order to convince them they had a drug-treatable, though symptomless, disease.
One of the biggest misconceptions perpetrated by conventional medicine practitioners is equating “mineral density” with “strength” of the bone. Sayer Ji points out in his article:
“mineral density of the bone .. is not the same thing as bone quality/strength. …Indeed, in some cases having higher bone density indicates that the bone is actually weaker”
“One of the most important facts about bone mineral density, conspicuously absent from discussion, is that having higher-than-normal bone density in middle-aged and older women actually INCREASES their risk of breast cancer by 200-300%, and this is according to research published in some of the world’s most well-respected and authoritative journals, e.g. Lancet, JAMA, NCI.“
It is also important to note that very high doses of calcium recommended for those diagnosed with “osteopenia” or “osteoporosis” may cause more harm than good. For one thing, it is very important to have the right balance of calcium and magnesium. Many of us, especially women, are deficient in magnesium, and taking high doses of calcium will only make that worse.
The 2,000 mg RDA of calcium is based on a from that is not readily absorbed: calcium carbonate. In fact only about 10%, or 200 mg, is absorbed. Better forms are calcium citrate, ascorbate or malate, of which you only need 200 – 250 mg per day. However the best forms are from whole foods, such as greens. Note, however, that you can only absorb the calcium from greens that are braised in a good quality oil (olive, avocado or coconut oil). The calcium and other minerals in raw greens are bound-up by oxalates that are only broken down by these oils. Eating the greens in raw or steamed form does not provide absorbable calcium. See my post: Basic Braised Greens (About) for instructions.
5 Foods to Avoid, to Protect your Bones
from Native Path [Note: the article is a sales pitch for a collagen supplement, but the foods to avoid are still important; I’ve added my own info from my science background].
- Soft drinks, including diet soda, “are packed with phosphoric acid, which causes an increase in the blood’s acidity levels. As a result, the body pulls calcium out of our bones in order to bring the acidity levels back to normal.“
- Table salt (not unrefined sea salt) is high in sodium. While sodium is an important mineral, too much of it “causes calcium loss, weakening bones with time.” Unrefined sea salt has less sodium, and “up to 40% other minerals and trace elements – including potent doses of common minerals like potassium and calcium which help maintain the vital mineral balance needed for healthy bones.“
- Excessive caffeine from “soda, coffee or other caffeinated drinks: … When ingested excessively, caffeine can begin leaching calcium from bones, sapping their strength.”
- Hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated fats/oils contain “man-made, artery-blocking trans fats” [this doesn’t apply to natural trans fats which support our health]. Synthetic hydrogenation “destroys any naturally-occurring vitamin K in the vegetable oils. … Vitamin K is essential for strong bones.… To ensure your foods aren’t contaminated by these foul fats, check the ingredient list even if the label reads trans-fat-free for any “hydrogenated oils” or “partially hydrogenated oils. Those phrases are synonyms for synthetic trans fats and are likely to be snuck into your food.”
- Wheat bran (or bran from other grains like oat, and rye): Unless the bran is from sprouted grain or sourdough grain products, it “contains high levels of phytates which can prevent the body from absorbing calcium. … The sprouting [or sourdough] process breaks down phytates, which frees up nutrients like magnesium, B vitamins as well as nutrients from companion foods (like the calcium from fortified milk) easier to absorb.” [For more about phytates in grains, etc., see my article: Phytates & Toxic Lectins in Grains, Legumes, Nuts & Seeds, and How to Avoid Them.]
Botanical Research made easy:
From Sayer Ji (GreenMedInfo) has developed a new tool that makes searching for research studies on particular natural remedies. See his article/video: greenmedinfo.com/blog/why-natural-medicine-not-alternative. I shared this with Swan Valley Herbs, and Dr Gordon. Link to his Research Dashboard: greenmedinfo.com/research-dashboard
Brain and Nerve Health (Notes)
See Notes on Alzheimer’s, Dementia, and Other Neurodegenerative Diseases:
- Symptoms and Causes
- Nutrition: Foods & Supplements
- Diet & Livestyle Strategies
- Testing & Treatment
- Related Diseases & Disorders
- Brain & Nerve Health and Regeneration
Breakfast – the worst and best foods/supplements for morning meal:
(from video sales pitch for “Morning Complete” powdered supplement mix from “Activated You”). My notes from video, follow. I saved list of supplement ingredients from the sales pitch (jpg file, right) as HEALTH-NUTRITION > SUPPLEMENTS-About / MorningComplete ingredients.jpg; sorry it is so blurry, but you can also find it on truehealthdiary.com/morning-complete-review-what-does-it-do/)
The video notes that you should have bowel movements (BMs) 3 – 4 times/day.
Four Bad-For-You Breakfast foods (especially at beginning of day):
- Bacon & eggs, etc.
- Commercial breakfast shakes, especially those with soy
- Boxed/packaged cereals
- Orange juice
Best for first meal of the day:
- Prebiotics to support the good microbes in your gut. They have profound effect on the brain; lack of them leads to fatigue through poor digestion. Don’t feed the bad bugs first; instead give the good bugs what they need to thrive.
- Probiotics, esp B. coagulans
- Energy nutrients: root veggies and leafy greens
Cat’s conclusions: This is probably a good supplement to take (in water) instead of breakfast, but it is expensive. However, it contains berberine (which I take, but not every day, because taking it every day will result in your body no longer responding to berberine), and it doesn’t contain much protein, which I need to avoid hypoglycemia. I get many of the needed foods & extracts from my smoothie (which includes prebiotic powder, Mercola Greens (contains root and leafy veggies, green tea leaf extract; also mushrooms), and fermented beet-root.
from Green Med Info: Natural Options to Relieve Bad Breath. Options listed here; see article for more detail.
- Oil pulling
- Green tea
- Tulsi (Holy Basil)
- Turmeric (curcumin)
- Cinnamon oil and other essential oils
Broccoli and other Crucifers
see “Crucifers,” below
Butter, Butyrate, and Tributyrin
The primary fatty acid in butter is butyrate – that’s where butter got its name. “Buty” means the number “four;” butyrate has 4 carbons in the chain. Tributyrin is three butyrate side-chains; each is attached to one of the three carbons in the glycerol backbone of the tributyrin triglyceride.It is very important for good gut and liver health, as it feeds specific good bugs in your colon.
Check out this sales-pitch article on SaneSolution for more about its health benefits (sanesolution.com/lp/v3/slim-gut-postbiotic-breakthrough/).
Symptoms that you need this nutrient:
- Inability To Lose Deadly Visceral Fat.
- Leaky gut (incompletely digested nutrients breaking through the intestinal wall to enter the blood stream, where they trigger and immune response (allergy/food sensitivity).
- Diarrhea, Constipation & Painful Gas and Bloating. See “Bristol Stool Chart,” below (from Wikimedia Commons), for the different types of stool, to determine if yours is normal or not.
Where to get this important nutrient?
- Good quality butter from the whole milk of grass-fed/pastured dairy animals.
- It is also available supplementally, either in capsules or tiny non-chewable granules. However, it has a strong, “stinky” smell/taste.
- If you take it in capsules, it is recommended that you keep them frozen to minimize the smell/taste.
- I take a different version, “BUTYCAPS,” which are made via a micro-encapsulation technology, then formed into tiny non-chewable granules, flavored with banana, and enclosed in a small single-serving sachet. I add the contents of one sachet to my daily smoothie. See Amazon ASIN B077BLKJCX online for more.
Note: canker sores and cold sores are not the same. According to Web MD:
- Canker sores are small, shallow open woulds (or ulcers) inside your mouth; they can make eating and talking uncomfortable.
- Cold sores are a type of herpes, which are caused by the herpes simplex virus, and are highly contagious. They typically appear outside your mouth, usually under your nose, around your lips, or under your chin.
7 Natural Ways to Cure Canker Sores
From Green Med Info; for more detail, see the original article by Sayer Ji. Notes in square brackets are by me.
- Honey [raw, local honey is best]; [simply apply some to the sore, and also include it in your diet].
- Vitamin B12;
- Eliminate cow’s milk protein products if you have a immune reactivity to cow’s milk proteins.
- Laser therapy
- Eradicate H. pylori infection in your stomach, if you have one. See Green Med Info: Natural Ways to Kill H. Pylori for more detail.
- Avoid gluten [If you love bread, choose one made from sourdough or sprouted grain flour, as these processes partially break down the gluten].
Text moved to “Eyesight” in Notes on Natural Health Topics: D – G.
from Mercola (his supplement page): products.mercola.com/fermented-chlorella/
“Superfood chlorella is rich in many nutrients: chlorophyll, antioxidants, polysaccharides and proteins. This total package allows chlorella to support your health in many important ways:
- Supports your normal detoxification processes (see also Chlorella for Detox, below)
- Supports your immune system health
- Helps maintain blood sugar levels already in the normal range
- Helps support normal liver function
- Helps maintain blood pressure levels already in the normal range
- Helps maintain healthy blood lipid values, such as cholesterol and triglycerides
- Helps protect against the negative effects of oxidative stress
- Supports healthy cognitive function
- Supports optimal metabolism
Chlorella, for detox:
(from Mercola; sorry, lost the link) Often used for detox (especially heavy metal detox), but has many other good properties, such as supporting the immune system. Broken cell-wall is the only way its nutrients can be absorbed, but how the walls are broken is important.
Start with small dose (500 mg or less) and work up to 2.5 grams/day for most, but 4 grams is the upper limit. The brand I use (iherb SNS-01528) has 3 g per teaspoon of the powder; however, it doesn’t indicate that it is broken cell-wall. GFC-20418 does have broken cell wall and also provides 3 grams/tsp.
(from Dr. Mercola: articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/10/28/improve-health-by-optimizing-circadian-rhythm.aspx.) Includes:
- How circadian Rhythm is under genetic control, affecting hormone levels and many other factors at the cellular level;
- Effect of chronic sleep disruption; melatonin production and sleep disorders; and
- Importance of meal timing (intermittent fasting).
See Climate Reality’s COP-26 e-book that I saved as CATS PERSONAL / HEALTH-NUTRITION / 2-PODCASTS-ARTICLES /> ClimateReality-cop-26-e-book.pdf. I can’t provide a link here because the file is too large (4.7 mb).. You may be able to get a copy by contacting Climate Reality Project via: climaterealityproject.org/content/contact-us.
Here’s some text copied from the introduction:
“We are living through the last years still left to prevent a future of permanent and catastrophic climate change. The planet’s future – humanity’s future – is in our hands. That’s the inescapable conclusion of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) “Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis” report, which was released in August 2021. …
But buried in the report is also cause for real hope. … Quickly cutting emissions and reaching net zero by mid-century “would haverapid and sustained e ects to limit human-caused climate change, compared withscenarios with high or very high GHG emissions.”
In other words, if we act fast and act boldly, we can still limit global warming, with profound consequences for the planet and the future we give our children.”
Coffee Benefits, especially on the Liver:
However, while coffee has many benefits, primarily due to the antioxidants in coffee beans, it “can have downsides for some people that are sensitive to caffeine or have adrenal fatigue though, so not everyone reacts the same.” (from a Jeff Hayes newsletter that included the above link to the Nutrition Watchdog article.
Not all coffee is created equal
Coffee’s medicinal value
From Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.com/blog/coffee-medicine-body-and-soul and greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/topic/18459/focus/1657/page
Coffee contains bitters, which have many beneficial effects. This may explain why coffee has been repeatedly shown to reduce type 2 diabetes risk. See GMI’s Focus link, above, for list of studies on this topic.
It also is a brain-booster, and awakens and stimulates the Qi (aka Chi) – our vital life force. Also, studies show coffee provides an “alternative to commonly prescribed drugs with serious side effects like prednisolone.”
It’s important to note that not all coffee is created equal. “Some is loaded with pesticides, and some is mold-ridden” (quote from a GMI email). So be wise! Unfortunately, the article does not detail how to tell “good” from “bad” coffee. However, it does recommend a particular brand: LifeBoost, which is “non-GMO, Pesticide-free, and Organic. “If you don’t want to try that, I would at least recommend using ONLY brands that are certified Organic, or at least GMO- and Pesticide-free. I definitely suggest avoiding common coffee brands that come already ground and in cans.
Per LifeBoost (see link above), “From the desk of Dr. Charles Livingston: John’s Hopkins reports several benefits [from a good quality coffee]:
- “Coffee drinkers are less likely to die from some of the leading causes of death.
- Coffee…contains antioxidants and other active substances that may reduce internal inflammation and protect against disease.
- Dark roast coffee decreases breakage in DNA strands, which occur naturally but can lead to cancer or tumors if not repaired by your cells.
- …coffee drinkers – decaf or regular – were 26 percent less likely to develop colorectal cancer.
- Coffee is chock full of substances that may help guard against…Alzheimer’s disease and heart disease.”
Coffee contains bitters, which have many beneficial effects. This may explain why coffee has been repeatedly shown to reduce type 2 diabetes risk. See greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/topic/18459/focus/1657/page for list of studies on this topic.
The Common Cold
5 best ways to avoid and fight the common cold
from Green Med Info: greenmedinfo.health/blog/five-best-ways-beat-cold, with my notes added:
- Vitamin C; In my opinion, the best source of this important vitamin is from whole citrus fruits (not just the juice). But it can also be taken supplementally; for example, I take NOW’s Alpha-Sorb C as part of my daily regimen; it includes alpha lipoic acid and vitamin C, and is the only form of alpha lipoic acid that doesn’t cause a food sensitivity reaction for me. [See also “Coronavirus” below (the common cold is a type of coronavirus)].
- Zinc: Different forms of this mineral have different effects; some don’t work while others do. “The best forms are zinc acetate, gluconate or gluconate-glycine. Other forms or those flavoured with citric acid, tartaric acid, sorbitol, or manitol don’t work as well.“
- Echinacea (herb) “prevents and treats colds.” I like Ginger & Echinacea Tea.
- Elderberry (herb) ” helps you recover from a cold in only two to three days compared to seven to eight days on a placebo.” See Elderberry Syrup
- Andrographis (herb) “significantly improves runny nose and sore throat in only two days. Cough, headache, ear ache and fatigue are significantly improved in four.“
Two bonus tips (from the same article):
- Probiotics help avoid getting a cold
- Garlic helps get rid of a cold
Cat’s note: I also take a lomatium complex tincture from Swan Valley Herbs, which helps me avoid getting a cold/flu if I start taking it at the first appearance of symptoms (swollen glands, sneezing, etc.). I haven’t had a cold for years but before I started using the tincture to avoid a cold, I found that it did help me get rid of a cold sooner. See my post: Natural Healing Remedies & Personal Care (near the bottom of the “Remedy Recipes” section) for what the complex contains.
Coronavirus: SARS-CoV-2 virus and COVID-19 disease
This section moved to: catsfork.com/CatsKitchen/coronavirus-sars-cov2-virus-and-covid-19-disease/.
Cough and Lung Remedies (as for Common Cold, Influenza and other Coronaviruses)
This information is from a Green Med Info article (greenmedinfo.com/blog/top-10-natural-cough-and-lung-remedies)
- Ginger, ginger-root;
- Moisture: use a humidifier, gargle with salt water, take a steam bath;
- Thyme: its antispasmodic effects make it useful as a cough suppressant;
- Honey: it feeds beneficial bacteria and kills the bad ones; best to use raw, local honey;
- Neti pot for cleaning the sinuses with a warm saline solution;
- Marshmallow root: when mixed with warm water, it forms a thick slick gel that has been used for centuries to coat the throat;
- Turmeric show promise in treating lung disease and controlling asthma in children; curcumin, a component of turmeric, has proven effective at attenuating inflamed airways and improving breathing function in both human[xi] and animal studies.[xii] [See GMI article for references xi and xii.]
- Eucalyptus is revered for its ability to soothe irritated sinuses and ease the lungs;
- Bromelain (enzyme from pineapple): As a potent anti-inflammatory, bromelain has been shown to produce beneficial effects on asthma[xiii] in mice in multiple studies.[xiv] [See GMI article for references xiii and xiv.]
- Spiced tea or chai is a traditional cough and sore throat remedy in India. [See GMO article for recommended herb/spices in the tea.
He notes that the health benefits are only for raw cranberries (or raw-frozen), and cooking or adding sweetener to them negates the benefits. He suggests adding them raw/frozen to a smoothie. Here’s his “Benefits at a Glance:”
- “Cranberries are a superfruit high in antioxidant and nutrient content. The fruit is best known for helping to prevent urinary tract infections; however, sweetened cranberry juice does not have the beneficial effect
- The fruit is high in polyphenols and prebiotic fiber, both of which help protect your heart health, including lowering systolic blood pressure and raising HDL cholesterol
- Some compounds found in cranberries target the inhibition of cancer cell proliferation in the lab and have a chemoprotective effect against colon cancer in an animal model
- The antibacterial properties of cranberries help reduce biofilm and plaque in the mouth, thus reducing cavity formation; consider adding raw cranberries to your salad, salsas and smoothies”
I’ve been adding unsweetened cranberry juice to my smoothie, but I might try using frozen cranberries instead. For the holiday season, I traditionally make a cranberry-orange relish, for which the cranberries are cooked. In the future, I will make my fermented cranberry orange relish (cranberries are not cooked; however, I do add honey to help with the fermentation).
Also, I suspect the same would be true for other closely related berries: blueberries and huckleberries.
Cat’s note: I sent a comment to Mercola’s article as follows, and am hoping to get an answer:
“I make a fermented cranberry-orange relish, using raw cranberries, fermentation liquid from a previous batch, and also a bit of raw local honey to assist with the fermentation. Most of the honey is fermented during the process. Do you know whether fermentation and/or the added honey negates the healthful benefits of cranberries?”
This section includes discussion of various crucifers: broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and kale, etc.
See also (this site):
- Notes on Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment, which includes a section on Cancer Prevention: Broccoli and other Crucifers (Article moved from Notes A – C).
- Detox (About), under General Detox: Broccoli sprouts are especially effective at detoxing pollutants, per Green Med Info article, citing a Chinese study published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research, that studied its effects on air pollution. The sprouts are more effective than mature plants because “At 5 to 6 days old, the sprouts contain over one hundred times more sulphoraphane per gram than the mature plant.” (from greenmedinfo.com/blog/mighty-broccoli-sprouts-rapidly-detox-pollutants)
18 Medicinal Properties of Cucumbers
from Green Med Info (GMI): greenmedinfo.com/blog/18-medicinal-properties-cucumbers; see his article for GMI’s references in brackets; for example: [ii], and for links to referenced articles on GMI’s website.
- “Keeps you hydrated. Cucumber is approximately 96% water, so it can be particularly effective at promoting hydration and helps you meet your daily fluid intake needs.[ii]
- Useful for weight loss. Each half-cup serving of cucumber offers just 7.8 calories.[iii] In an analysis, consuming high-water, low-calorie foods was linked to a significant reduction in body weight.[iv]
- Eases osteoarthritis pain. In a study, using 10 milligrams (mg) of an aqueous extract of cucumber twice daily proved effective in reducing pain related to moderate knee osteoarthritis and can be used to address knee pain, stiffness and physical functions related to the condition.[v]
- Osteoarthritis, caused by wear and tear on the joints, presently has no known cure and is conventionally managed through high doses of painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs that often come with side effects.
- Helps treat liver damage. Heat-treated cucumber juice showed a significant protective benefit on alcohol detoxification among animal subjects, suggesting a potential use in treating liver injury due to excess alcohol consumption.[vi]
- May lower blood sugar. A number of animal studies show that cucumber may effectively reduce and control blood sugar levels.[vii] Another study induced diabetes in animal subjects, provided them with cucumber peel extract and found that the peel reversed most of the changes associated with diabetes, causing a reduction in blood sugar.[viii]
- Acts as a skin whitener. An active component in cucumber leaves may have an inhibitory effect on melanin production and is a potentially useful skin whitening agent.[ix]
- Anticancer effects. The aqueous extract of cucumber contains bioactive compounds that exert anticancer activity.[x] “Our conclusion supports additional in-depth study of this pharmacologic activity as a malignant tumor agent,” wrote the researchers.
- Promotes regular bowel movement. Cucumbers are water-rich and help prevent dehydration, a major risk factor for constipation. Staying properly hydrated can improve stool consistency as well as regularity.[xi] The seeds, while having a cooling effect on the body, are used to prevent constipation.[xii]
- Soothes skin. Cucumber is known for its soothing effect on skin irritations and its ability to reduce swelling.[xiii] It also has the power to alleviate pain from sunburn.
- Helps prevent wrinkles. A clinical trial showed that cucumber juice can be an effective skin care ingredient as it helps prevent wrinkles by restoring the natural elasticity of skin.[xiv]
- Potent anti-inflammatory. An iminosugar amino acid in cucumber, called idoBR1, may function as an anti-inflammatory agent and its importance in the diet therefore warrants further investigation, according to a 2020 study.[xv]
- Supports bone health. A half-cup serving provides 8.53 µg of vitamin K.[xvi] Based on a review of the current literature, supplementing with vitamin K1 (the type found in cucumbers) and K2 can reduce the incidence of fractures among postmenopausal women.[xvii]
- Serves as a natural eye mask. Research suggests that applying cucumber to your eyes can impart a cooling effect on skin, hydrate the eyes and surrounding areas and help reduce dark circles due to its vitamin K levels.[xviii]
- Supports cardiovascular health. Cucurbitacins in cucumber may prevent atherosclerosis, on top of tested effectiveness against inflammation, cancer and diabetes.[xix]
- Slashes mortality risk. Beta-carotene, found abundantly in cucumber, is an important pro-vitamin A carotenoid. A meta-analysis showed that dietary or circulating beta-carotene was inversely associated with risk of all-cause mortality, citing the possibility of extending human lifespan.[xx]
- Helps combat prostate cancer. Cucurbitacin B, a naturally occurring compound in cucumber and other vegetables, significantly and specifically inhibited prostate cancer cell growth.[xxi]
- Protects against diabetes complications. In a study, cucumber was able to prevent oxidative stress and carbonyl stress, considered a safe and suitable way to protect against the complications typically observed in diabetes.[xxii]
- Supports brain function. Fresh cucumbers were ground and turned into a paste of varying concentrations.[xxiii] The conclusion: They helped increase cognition in animal models.”